Monday, July 27, 2020

Ranking every single MLB stadium


     
 The thing that separates MLB parks from arenas and fields from the other major sports is their uniqueness. Every NHL and NBA arena has the exact same dimensions, with just their location being the thing that puts them apart from the rest. The same could be said for the NFL, although some seating arrangements are different. Every MLB stadium has different field dimensions compared to the next one, plus a different skyline view and other quirks. While I rank them, keep one thing in mind: these are based off of looks and special details. Age of the park has nothing to do with the rankings, so sorry Wrigley Field and Fenway Park, the thing that aids you in other rankings is gone now. Another disclaimer: I have not been to every MLB stadium. 

       30. Guaranteed Rate Field, Chicago White Sox
I have never been a big fan of Guaranteed Rate Field. It is just a default baseball stadium, with nothing that makes it special. The signs on top of the scoreboard that I will now call "the seven swirls" are cool, but that's just about it. There's not many ballparks that I don't like, but this is one of them.

       29. RingCentral Coliseum, Oakland Athletics
The MLB stadium with the most foul territory space, RingCentral Coliseum (formerly known as the Oakland Coliseum) is hardly an MLB stadium, as it doubled as the field for the Oakland Raiders before they moved to Las Vegas this year. With weird and ugly gaps all-throughout the outfield, this place has little outfield seating, and A's fans won't be too sad to see it go when (if) they open up a new ballpark in a few years. 

       28. Miller Park, Milwaukee Brewers 
From here-on-out, I like every single stadium. Miller Park has a retractable roof, which does give it bonus points. So does the slide that their mascot goes down. But besides that, nothing else really separates it from the rest of the league. 

       27. Tropicana Field, Tampa Bay Rays
I already know that Brewers fans won't be happy with this one. The main thing that Miller Park has going for it are the roof and the slide, and "the Trop" has the roof, and the stingrays in center field are cooler than the slide, especially since it also relates to the team. Who wouldn't love Ji-Man Choi hitting right-handed bombs into a tank full of Rays. Oh, well, I think we could have seen that coming.

       26. Globe Life Field, Texas Rangers
This ranking is more arbitrary, since it is mostly based off of my first impressions. Globe Life Field is a big step-down from its predecessor, Globe Life Park. The retractable roof is great, but the main thing that the park has going for it is the scoreboard hanging high-up over right field, making us wait for the glorious day when someone finds a way to hit a baseball off of it. Besides that, it is kind of bland.

       25. Rogers Centre, Toronto Blue Jays
The view of Rogers Centre is great when the retractable roof is open. Plus, the hotel is center field is one of the more creative things in an MLB stadium. So, Rogers Centre should be high up on the list. However, the many decks in left and right field look really bad, so it drops a lot of spots. 

       24. Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City Royals
I have never been a big fan of Kauffman Stadium, and I don't know why. The fountains in the outfield is a really nice touch, but the rest of the field has never stood out to me. It has already risen many spots while I was doing these rankings, and I wouldn't be surprised if it went up more in the future. 

       23. Yankee Stadium, New York Yankees
As a Yankee fan, this placement feels weird. But, Yankee Stadium feels like it was built to be the most average MLB stadium that there is. The short porch in right is always fun, and I really like the look of the terraces that were added in a few years ago. However, nothing makes this place special, besides the team that plays there. Monument Park moves it up multiple spots. 

       22. Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles Dodgers
Dodger Stadium has a very similar problem to Yankee Stadium, as it seems basic. However, the beautiful background of Los Angeles mountains definitely moves it up a lot of places. The concourse underneath the outfield seats is a fun touch, but the ugly batter's eye in center field hurts its placement. 

       21. Chase Field, Arizona Diamondbacks
Chase Field has an odd batter's eye in center field, but the pool in right-center is an automatic win. While it might be pointless, the sharp edges separating the bullpen and the crowd down the left and right field line is a fun quirk. Also, with the Arizona weather, a retractable roof is a very important touch. 

       20. Marlins Park, Miami Marlins
While the loss of the sculpture in left-center field makes the stadium less unique, but Marlins Park is still unique. Like Chase Field, there is a pool, but it is in an exclusive club in left field. A wall in right-center field separates center field from right field, and makes the right field section of seats, right behind the bullpen, look cool. 

       19. Target Field, Minnesota Twins
Down the left field line, the wall in foul territory with standing room space on it is a really nice add for Target Field. The view of the right field seats, and over the right field seats of the city is also a very good look. The dimensions are kooky, which makes a unique ballpark.

       18. Truist Park, Atlanta Braves 
The second newest ballpark in the league after Globe Life Field, the park was called SunTrust park when it opened up, and it is a nice ballpark. However, the company name change made an awful sounding ballpark. The chophouse in right field looks very cool, especially with the seating in front. The park looks very clean, and my only complaint with it is the awful name. 

       17. Comerica Park, Detroit Tigers
While it doesn't compare to Monument Park, the brick wall in left-center with the Tigers' retired numbers is a good idea. While having the center field wall 420 feet deep isn't good for hitters, down the line at Comerica is shallow, and the gaps make it easy for triples and inside-the-park-home-runs, which are always great. 

       16. T-Mobile Park, Seattle Mariners
Formerly known as Safeco Field, the left field concourse that leads up to the bullpen is a good look. Also, the second deck in left ends short enough so that it is possible to hit the ball out of the stadium, the most fun type of home run. 

       15. Busch Stadium, St. Louis Cardinals
The most improved stadium on the list, Busch Stadium gets so many points for the arch in the background behind right-center field. Besides that, the buildings to the left of the arch also make a good looking background. The left-center buildings are a clean look, and the green batter's eye is nice, although fans are not allowed on it, unlike Globe Life Park, the former field of the Rangers. 

       14. Wrigley Field, Chicago Cubs
I'm sorry, Cubs fans. You should have been prepared for that, with age not a factor. I've never been a big fan of the ivy on the outfield wall, but it is a quirk that makes Wrigley unique. The buildings around the stadium make the field feel like it is in a neighborhood, because it is. Also, the seating down the right field line and the scoreboard look good. 

       13. Petco Park, San Diego Padres
The warehouse down the left field line is original to Petco. It is always special when someone hits a home run that lands on top of it. Also, the San Diego buildings make a cool background for a stadium. Plus, Bartolo Colon's only home run was in this park, so that's a bonus.

       12. Progressive Field, Cleveland Indians
The high wall in left field isn't the best high wall in left field in the MLB, but it creates a cool aesthetic, especially down the line with the standing room only section. Also, the concourse in center behind the bullpen makes the bullpen feel like it is in the stands and not the field. Progressive Field has always been a favorite of mine, and that's why it is at the 12th spot.

       11. Coors Field, Colorado Rockies
Who doesn't love home runs (besides pitchers)? The elevation of Denver helps balls travel further, leading to more home runs, despite a big outfield. The purple row of seats at exactly one mile above sea level is also a great touch by the Rockies. The trees in center are random, but still feel cool. 

       10. Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati Reds
While there isn't anything super special with it, "Great American" is just a good looking stadium. I like the smoke stack-looking pillars in right-center, plus the bullpens are condensed down the line so that they don't take away any seats. 

       9. Citi Field, New York Mets
The decks in left field look natural, unlike the odd, trampled decks at the Rogers Centre and other places. Also, the bridge right-center over the bullpen is a very good look, and the Pepsi Porch might not be a unique thing, but it also overlooks the bridge in a nice way. 

       8. Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia Phillies

While it may be contaminated right now, "CBP" has a bridge behind the center field batter's eye which bridges left and right field, making traveling through the ballpark a fun experience, as you can watch the game while walking, and you can look over the elevated bullpens in center field. Also, who wouldn't love the Philly Phanatic roaming around?


       7. Nationals Park, Washington Nationals

The left-center seats are much different from the other sections, as they are colored red and separate from everything else, making the park feel unique throughout. To dead center, two walls converge to make a tiny gap far away from home plate, a little quirk that isn't in every stadium. While Yankee Stadium is perfectly average in a boring way, Nationals Park is similar, but in a good way.


       6. Minute Maid Park, Houston Astros

The Crawford Boxes in left-center are so unique and odd that it makes Minute Maid Park special. The train on top of the boxes does the exact same thing, and in a cooler way. Right field is a little bland, but that's fine, especially with everything going on in left. Minute Maid could go for a top-three spot, but the infamous Tal's Hill is no longer apart of the field. 


       5. Angel Stadium, Los Angeles Angels

While Angel Stadium might not be as high on other people's lists as it is on mine, I've always loved it because of the rocks in left-center field, a really cool touch. While it may not be great for money, having no seats and instead having grass from left-center to center makes the park seem less major league, but more fun. Also, there is a hit it for $1 million can in the outfield. 


       4. PNC Park, Pittsburgh Pirates

While most people have it as number one, PNC Park is not there for me, but it is still amazing. The Roberto Clemente Bridge and the Allegheny River work as a great background. The field itself feels small, with little outfield seating, and it is very possible to hit a ball into the river. The very short wall in left makes robbing a home run easier, and that is always fun.


       3. Oracle Park, San Francisco Giants

While having four different names since opening in 2000 is not ideal, Oracle Park is the best stadium in the National League. While I'm not the biggest fan of left field, with the biggest thing to point out being a statue of a Coca-Cola bottle and a baseball glove, right field is where it makes it great. Triple alley is one of my favorite on-field quirks, and who could forget McCovey Cove, the body of water in right field that tops PNC Park's Allegheny River. 


       2. Fenway Park, Boston Red Sox

Our runner-up might have one of the smallest capacities, but it is possibly the coolest park. Fenway has the green monster in left field, which makes it top-five, easily. But, Fenway Park gets a higher ranking because of other things, like the odd configurationof the walls in center field. With the monster, the pesky pole is often overshadowed, but it helps odd home runs occur in right field. 


       1. Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore Orioles

While it would be best for the "Oriole Park at" part of the name to be dropped, Camden Yards is the best MLB stadium. The B&O warehouse trumps the buildings at Petco Park and other places, and it also is the border for a concourse on Eutaw Street that includes a standing room area in right field. Plus, "Boog's", a barbecue place in right-center field run by former MVP Boog Powell, is a great place to eat. 


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